SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) - UPDATE: Suspect John Michael Manning was arrested and booked into the Missoula County Jail in Montana.
He spent 10 years serving with the U.S. Marine Corps now a Salt Lake City man says he was conned by someone claiming to be a fellow marine.
Enlisted at the age of 17, Kurt Harris served three tours of duty with the U.S. Marines that took him all over the world including Fallujah, Iraq. But you wouldn't know it looking through Harris' belongings. Harris says all of his awards, his uniforms and his medals were stolen by a man who claimed he was a fellow marine; a friend he thought needed help.
"You know, he talked the talk and he knew the jargon. And you know, he had war stories, you know, and talked about his brothers in arms, and just all these... So I had no reason not to believe he was a Marine," said Harris.
Harris says he met John Michael Manning, who goes by Mike Manning, at the gym 8 months ago. The two became close, a bond thought to be tied to their military service. So when Manning said he need a place to stay for a few nights Harris thought nothing of helping his fellow Marine. "So I immediately said yeah, absolutely, you can crash with me," said Harris. "Friday evening I came back and the house was just a mess."
Not only was his home a mess, Harris' laptop, his 2008 black Dodge Charger and his Marine uniforms were missing. Salt Lake City police tell ABC4 Utah that Manning is the man they're looking for in this case.
Harris said, "He never stepped foot in boot camp. He never put on the uniform a day in his life that he had earned. Just a complete fabrication from a guy who never earned it."
Several police departments across the state are now on the lookout for Manning
A quick search of Manning's criminal history in Utah shows multiple charges of 3rd degree felony theft and 2nd degree felony theft by deception. He currently has a warrant out for his arrest. And Harris tells GOOD4Utah since his story has gone public, he's heard from people across the country who claim Manning also conned or stole from them.
Harris' 2008 black Dodge Charger has Marine Corps license plate with the number 03YUT.
If you have any information on Manning's whereabouts you're asked to contact Salt Lake City Police.